Covid-19 aside, one senses that a new, positive, energy is taking root in Italy. Slowly, but surely, a new generation is coming up—not just in fashion—who are finding new ways to navigate the world, without abandoning tradition entirely. One of those change-makers is Elodie Di Patrizi, who made a head-turning front-row entrance at Versace in black leather and legs for miles—instantly making one wonder if Donatella has a new muse.
Born in 1990 on the outskirts of Rome, the pop singer is currently enjoying enormous success with her chart-topping hit, “Andromeda.” (The lyrics were written by Alessandro Mahmoud, known as Mahmood, another mover and shaker-maker on the Italian youth scene.) Elodie hit fashion gold at Sanremo, Italy’s largest music festival, with her all-Versace wardrobe that showed off the full range of her style, from androgyne to vamp. “I love to play with fashion,” she tells Vogue. “Some days I love to look like a boy, and others like a sexy bombshell. With fashion you can be a different person every day,” she adds.
Elodie, who says she “had a difficult past” that included a brief foray into modeling, is coming in to her own musically and sartorially. “A couple of years ago I had pink hair and looked androgynous, now I’m a woman and I like to play with my femininity.” After years of wearing her hair short, the singer is thinking about growing it out—but for now she’s exploring her inner Donatella. Elodie was introduced to Versace through her stylist, Ramona Tabita, who describes her client as “a strong and sexy woman.” It was a pairing that was clearly meant to be. “Inside the clothes of Donatella Versace, I felt like I was wearing the armor of a warrior!” Elodie notes.
Not that she always feels this way. When asked what she’d like Vogue readers to know about her, Elodie replied: “I know that I seem to be a strong, successful woman, but I would like people to know that I am a normal almost-30-years-old girl. I have my own insecurities. I am sensitive and sometimes I feel fragile like everyone else. Elodie is much more than a singer: first of all, I am a woman and I want people to understand every aspect of my life. I try to express myself not only through music, but also with my body, my clothes, and my values.”
Women’s empowerment and freedom of expression are causes in which the singer is actively engaged. Last year, she was part of a project, Le ragazze di Porta Venezia, that brought women together from the music and fashion world, as a result of which she says, “I feel part of a new awareness that women have of themselves, of their role and their power in the music industry. I see women supporting each other in music and I am proud of that.” The exposure given to her by her work and travels has deepened both her empathy and her belief that everyone should be able to “live the joy of music.” Appropriately, Elodie invited the Syrian refugee Aeham Ahmad, whose piano had been burned as a result of the country’s civil war, to perform with her at Sanremo. “I think that music should be an international language of freedom and everyone should be able to express themselves through it,” she concludes. “I cannot imagine a world without music.”